Bridport Area Neighbourhood Plan
Bridport Area Neighbourhood Plan 

12th December 2016

Neighbourhood Plan Working Group

Sustainable Transport Group

12th December 2016 at Mountfield

 

1. Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), Anna Lovell, Mike Farmer and Colin Divall.

 

2. Apologies; John Collingwood

 

3. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

4. Update on Actions/ Matters Arising from last meeting.

 

Contact with the Green Spaces sub-group is still awaited regarding their investigations on promoting and maintaining the use of local footpaths.

 

5. Issues/ Agenda items.

 

Colin Divall, a prospective new member, was unanimously welcomed to the Group. Introductions from Colin, and then reciprocally from the Group members ensued.

 

Colin asked for clarification of Nigel Ewen's earlier involvement in the promotion or operation of narrow-gauge railways, and agreed to enquire among his contacts in the Welsh heritage-railway movement. The meeting agreed that this would be a useful exercise.

 

Results of the Bridport Green Party’s questionnaire on the pedestrianisation of South Street are that 72% (99 residents) are for a trial period to assess the viability of such a scheme. The meeting felt that the vulnerability of pedestrians should be stressed in any proposals/ submissions, by the Group.

 

The importance of footpaths was discussed. It had been noted that the original, direct path adjacent to Highlands Park caravan park had been re-routed and lengthened. It is alleged that the original path had been prematurely blocked prior the statutory public notice being given, possibly by the landowner, though this cannot be corroborated.

 

Furthermore, the Group felt that Bridport Town Council should be asked to frequently monitor the positions/ closures of our footpaths. It was agreed to raise this issue at the next NP Steering Group meeting.

John Collingwood had contacted the Bothenhampton resident regarding the condition of footpaths on Askers Meadow.

 

Only one more accident figure for the Miles Cross road junction was obtained from Dorset Road Safe.

 

Mike Farmer reported back as the Group’s delegate attending the A35 Action Group’s meeting held on 16th September. He informed the meeting that the chairman Sir Oliver Letwin MP., was very supportive of the proposals to reduce speed limits on the A35 Bridport by-pass, as a means of reducing accident figures.

 

6. AOB

None

 

7. Arrangements for Next Meeting; TBA

7th September 2016

Neighbourhood Plan Working Group

Sustainable Transport Group

7th September 2016 at Mountfield

 

1. Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell and Mike Farmer.

 

2. Apologies; Rose Chaney

 

3. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

4. Update on Actions/ Matters Arising (no formal agenda was adopted at this meeting).

The Bridport News have been contacted by Mike Farmer regarding reduction of speed limits at the A35 Miles Cross road junction, Symondsbury.

The meeting felt that there should be an improvement of the signage at that junction, to convey exactly who has right-of-way when turning on/ off the A35. This should be added to an evidence template, and submitted to the Steering Group.

The Group’s delegate will attend the next meeting of the A35 Action Group on 16th September.

 

The Bridport Green Party questionnaire on the pedestrianisation of South Street would be monitored and results ultimately discussed accordingly.

 

Mr G. Fryer’s proposal to reduce speed limits (to 20 mph) on the total length of the B3162 was discussed and it agreed that (revised to that of Mr. Fryer) a limit of 20 mph from the River Simene to the North Allington roundabout be proposed, the caveat being that Miles Cross to the Simene road bridge be reduced from 40 to 30 mph.

 

Dorset Road Safe (Dorset Constabulary) will be contacted for current accident figures for the Miles Cross junction.

 

Footpaths information from the NP Environment Group (Green Spaces sub-group) is still awaited.

 

An enquiry from a Bothenhampton resident regarding the poor condition of footpaths on Askers Meadow will be investigated by the Group, and discussed.

 

Sustrans are still to be contacted, to initiate a meeting with the Group.

 

Information is still awaited from Jurassic Coast Railways regarding an updated development proposal.

 

5. AOB

None

 

6. Arrangements for Next Meeting; TBA

27th July 2016

Neighbourhood Plan Working Group

Sustainable Transport Group

27th July 2016 at Mountfield

 

1. Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell and Mike Farmer.

 

2. Apologies; Rose Chaney

 

3. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

4. Update on Actions/ Matters Arising from Previous Meeting

 

Sustrans have yet to be contacted.

Jurassic Coast Railways have contacted the Group with an interim agenda, implying a proposed re-launch date of Autumn, 2016.

Nick Gray (Green Spaces sub-group) is still to be contacted.

 

5. Issues/Agenda Items.

 

It was felt by the meeting that there was scope for a rail system from Bridport ultimately, to Maiden Newton now that the no. 73 bus service, covering that locale, has been withdrawn.

There had been some supportive interest at a recent Neighbourhood Plan roadshow on implementing a rail system.

 

Local cycle groups are to be canvassed with a questionnaire.

 

Sustrans will be contacted now that we have identified some appropriate representatives

 

 

 

The Dorset County Council Traffic Feasibility Study will be parked until data is generated for inspection and utilisation by the Group. DCC had said that any traffic figures generated independently by the Group, would not be accepted by them.

 

From discussions it was decided to generate an evidence based template* (see Actions) proposing the pedestrianisation of South Street in the final NP document.

 

Furthermore, an evidence based template* (see Actions) would be generated, proposing the lowering of the speed limits (to 40mph, throughout) on the A35 in the vicinity of (the accident black-spot) Miles Cross.  A second suggestion was to lower the limit from 40 to 30mph on the first 0.5 mile section (both carriageways) on Sea Road North, Bridport.

 

Actions.

 

Jurassic Coast Railways to be contacted on more information wrt their proposals.

Bus costings to be gleaned from DCC as part of the Group's liason with Bridport Area Community Bus Stakeholder (BACBS) group.

Sustrans to be contacted.

*Two more evidence based templates to be generated. (see section 5.)

 

6. AOB

None

 

7. Arrangements for Next Meeting; TBA

23rd June 2016

Neighbourhood Plan Working Group

Sustainable Transport Group

23rd June 2016 at Mountfield

 

  1. Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell and Mike Farmer.

  2. Apologies; Rose Chaney
  3. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct with one exception; Catherine Searle had unfortunately decided to resign from the group.
  4. Update on Actions/ Matters Arising from Previous Meeting None
  5. Issues/Agenda Items.

It was discovered that various documents and maps relating to cycleways, had originated from Sustrans in 2014. Bridport Town Council had utilised some of this data, and reported this in their meeting of 17th March 2016. Apparently, this data had originally been accepted by DCC, so it should be relevant and acceptable in our subsequent proposals.

 

Sustrans are to be invited to make a presentation to the Group, at a future date.

In the event of a new school at the Vearse Farm development, a new cycleway/ footpath would be invaluable.

 

Dorset Constabulary have been consulted by the Group wrt CCTV cameras, to monitor traffic flows at the Town Hall junction. They informed the Group that the required information was held by Dorset County Council. Before this could be actioned, Bob Gillis (BTown Clerk) informed the Group that Bridport Town Council are in discussions with DCC on this issue, and the Group would be informed of developments.

 

The alternative to a roundabout, that is to pedestrianise South Street, was further discussed. It was felt that it was undemocratic for several businesses in South Street to object to this act when historically, a poll of local residents resulted in 85% supporting this proposal.

 

Parking was discussed and it was stressed that this should involve provision for invalids, in any proposals.

A West Bay based park & ride scheme should be included.

 

It was felt that the proposal by Jurassic Coast Railways be re-investigated. However, it was felt that a modification in that a shorter route from West Bay to (including a park & ride option, be located at Broomhills) Pymore, be considered in the interim. Jurassic Coast Railways would be contacted with this proposal.

 

It was suggested we incorporate/ liase with Bridport Area Community Bus Stakeholder (BACBS) group.

 

  6. AOB: None

 

  7. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00h on 27th July  at Mountfield

2nd June 2016

Sustainable Transport Group

 

2nd June 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell, Rose Chaney, Mike Farmer and Catherine Searle

 

  1. Apologies; None

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

  1. Update Actions / Matters Arising from Previous Meeting - None

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items.

No feedback has been received from Nick Gray (Green Spaces sub-group) as yet.

An observation that various local footpaths have been encroached by some residents and that boundaries had been expanded. It was suggested that Wayne Sayers; Footpaths Officer (DCC) and Daryl Chambers (Bridport Borough Surveyor) be informed of this situation. The repeat of an exercise to determine the viability of footpaths on common land is ongoing. Failure to utilise established routes could result in their removal/ deregistration.

 

A local photographer has been contacted by the Group, who will film traffic movements at the Town Hall junction, as a means of generating an evidence base. Alternatively, it was believed that the permanent cameras at the junction could be utilised. However, it was discovered that these are used for security monitoring and thus are not continuously in use.

The poor visability at that junction was discussed, but it was felt that the improved road-layout being proposed, alleviated this concern. If a roundabout was deemed viable as an alternative to traffic lights, a pilot scheme of perhaps one week to analyse the implementation of this change would be suggested by the Group, and hopefully if acceptable, a permanent re-design of the road layout would follow.

Furthermore, the alternative of pedestrianisation or alternatively imposing one-way traffic in South Street might be a sounder alternative to a roundabout. One member felt that Historic England should be consulted wrt pedestrianisation.

 

Discussion followed that Bridport Town Council should be charged with overseeing the organisation of local bus services. It was felt that DCC no longer support the approach currently cited in the Local Plan.

It was felt that cyclists should not use dedicated cycle-paths but should share the roads as now, with other traffic.

Town car parking should be deterred, by encouraging the use of alternative public transport.

 

A selection of inputs (three) were generated to express the Group’s sentiments as to be included in a NP leaflet to be distributed with a questionnaire at forthcoming local fetes, this summer.

 

  1. AOB - None

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting; At 17.00 on the 23rd June 2016, at Mountfield

 

16th May 2016 

Sustainable Transport Group

 

16th May 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell and Rose Chaney

 

  1. Apologies; Mike Farmer and Catherine Searle

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

 

  1. Update on Actions/ Matters Arising from Previous Meeting

 

John Collingwood has met with Bob Gillis and duplication of effort has been wrt cycleways has been resolved. Bridport Town council will be contacted wrt future traffic flow survey at Bridport’s Town Hall road junction.

Cycling for Health have been contacted.

The meeting with Nick Gray (Green Spaces sub-group) has been set for 20th May.

Kevin Humphries (DCC) as suggested by Joel Rose has not been contacted as yet ? Furthermore, it was suggested Blair Turner (DCC) be contacted as well. Random, anonymous comments from residents have been forwarded to us from DCC.

The eight week traffic consultation will begin on 27th May.

As yet no response from Wayne Sayers (DCC).

 

Reference made to Setting up a Community Transport Scheme in Dorset; Guidance and Toolkit booklet, distributed.

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items.

Not discussed as lack of time dictated that contents in item 3. had not been discussed at previous meeting (4th May).

 

Town Hall road junction not discussed due to absence of Mike Farmer.

 

 

 

  1. AOB.

None

 

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 17.00 on the 2nd June 2016, at Mountfield

4th May 2016

Sustainable Transport Group

 

4th May 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell, Mike Farmer, Rose Chaney and Catherine Searle.

 

In addition; Initial meeting, 1) Nick Gray and Richard Nicholls (Green  Spaces, sub-group) and at later separate meeting, 2) Joel Rose (Total Programme Manager, Dorset County Council)

 

  1. Apologies; None

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting; were agreed as correct.

 

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting - None

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

A). Meeting discussed alleviating potential duplication of resource regarding the mapping and proposal of landscaped footpaths. This should include the implementation of flora and fauna. A new cycle route from Walditch to Bridport and the plethora of routes in Bothenhampton, was discussed. Green areas had been sought, eg Askers Meadow, but it was felt that it should remain as cattle grazing land. Apparently, five grades of footpaths exist. With the proposed advent of Vearse Farm School, cycleway(s) is of paramount importance. Richard Nicholls has been visiting parishes to glean their views on footpath adoption, ans a report will follow its conclusion. Suggestion that the Town be a circular hub, and various routes emanate from that, accordingly.

 

John Collingwood and Nick Gray will liase, and discuss the forthcoming strategies.

 

B). Joel Rose has been involved with the implementation of Dorset Travel.

Dorset CC are undertaking bus route assessments. The concept of school routes, chasing public routes is under scrutiny. This would have benefits on rural routes not typically served routinely by a bus route. However, this would be precluded where the general public would be travelling with very young or special educational needs children.

 

An eight week consultation period is about to begin this month. This refers to a consultation to withdraw funding from all subsidised bus routes in an attempt to save £1m from the public transport budget; the April withdrawals were designed to save £500k.

Sponsored bus-routes was suggested, eg by pubs and/or restaurants in rural locations. This having significant applicability to the tourist trade. Furthermore, synergy with Artsreach, to bus rural residents to attend local theatre performances.

 

 

  1. AOB. - None

 

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 on the 16th May 2016, at Mountfield

13th April 2016

Sustainable Transport Group

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell, Mike Farmer, Rose Chaney and Catherine Searle

 

  1. Apologies; None

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting were agreed as correct.

 

Reference to Cllrs. Daryl Turner and Ros Kayes were correctly cited as DCC contacts. This allayed concerns by some members.

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting

 

Minutes of Bridport Area Community Bus Stakeholder meeting (16/3/2016) are still awaited.

 

Traffic control, Laura Russ at Dorset County Council (DCC) is still to be contacted.

 

Public Transport; Amanda Evans (DCC) is still to be contacted.

 

Cycling and walking; Wayne Sayers (DCC) is still to be contacted.

 

Narrow-gauge Railway; Nigel Ewens, Director, Jurassic Coast Railways has been contacted wrt the proposition not being supported by the Group. This situation could be reconsidered, if planning permission was granted in the lifetime of Vision 2030.

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

The areas discussed were:-

 

Disappointment was expressed on the duplication of effort by BT Council Highways and Transport sub-committee, for discussing the cycle routes wrt Sea Road and East Road roundabout. The Group had not been contacted.

 

DCC had been contacted to convey traffic figures for the Town Hall junction, Bridport, as to generate an evidence base for proposing the introduction of a roundabout. Unfortunately, figures from 2003, were the only data available. Alternative methods, eg., the current positioned police cameras, perhaps be utilised to perform a survey, were discussed.

 

Action points;

 

Approach the DCC contacts cited in item 3) above.

Liase with BT Council to initiate a current survey of the Town Hall traffic junction.

 

  1. AOB.

 

Catherine Searle was invited to join the Group, which she accepted

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 on the 4th May 2016, at Mountfield

22nd March 2016 

Sustainable Transport Group

 

22nd March 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell and Mike Farmer

 

  1. Apologies; Ignacio Gomez Aguilera.

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting were agreed as correct.

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting

 

Some members expressed concern on contacting Dorset County Council based on previous experiences.

Minutes of the Bridport Area Community Bus Stakeholder Meeting of 16th March, convened by Ros Kayes are awaited. Discussion will ensue on receipt, accordingly.

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

The areas discussed were:-

 

In general, Cllrs. Daryl Turner and Ros Kayes are to be contacted regarding the following areas;

.

Traffic control, Laura Russ at Dorset County Council (DCC) to be contacted.

 

Public Transport; Amanda Evans (DCC) to be contacted.

 

Cycling and walking; Wayne Sayers (DCC) to be contacted.

 

Rail system; Jurassic Coast Railways to be contacted to express our lack of support due to a non-robust evidence base, on proposals for a narrow gauge railway.

 

Action points; As per item 4)

 

Working group synergy; it was suggested that the Steering Group publish a frequent meeting timetable for all groups, as to promote inter-Group discussion(s).

 

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 on the 13th April 2016, at Mountfield

 

9th March 2016 

Sustainable Transport Group

 

9th March 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer (Sec), John Collingwood, Anna Lovell, Mike Farmer and Ignacio Gomez Aguilera.

 

In addition; Jo Witherden

 

 

  1. Apologies; None

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting were agreed as correct.

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting - N/A

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

Essentially, the meeting consisted of discussions of the Sustainable Transports presentations at the Steering Group meeting on 24th February.

 

The areas discussed were:-

 

Traffic control wrt the Town Hall junction.

 

Public Transport; improving current and proposing alternative bus routes. Incorporation of strategic bus-hubs (Bridport bus station).

 

Cycling and walking; the protection of cycling links, and the continuum of current fragmented cycle routes.

 

Rail system; Jurassic Coast Railways producing a more robust evidence base to pursue their proposals

 

Action points

 

Jo requested we all contact the relevant bodies at Dorset County Council, wrt to the above four areas. She would supply contact details accordingly.

 

Contacts having been supplied, ALL will discuss contact strategies at the next meeting

 

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 on the 22nd March 2016, at Mountfield

3rd February 2016 

Sustainable Transport Group

 

3rd February 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Bob Driscoll (Chair), Richard Freer, John Collingwood, Anna Lovell, Mike Farmer and Ignacio Gomez Aguilera.

 

In addition; Phyllida Culpin

 

 

  1. Apologies; Erica Pretty and Rose Chaney

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting were agreed as correct.

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting

N/A

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

Phyllida Culpin presented an overview of the transport situation, currently adopted in Somerset.

 

Her presentation made reference to the document, Rural Access and Transport; South Somerset Together 2013.

 

In the light of our past Chairman’s resignation, Bob Driscoll was nominated and agreed to take on this role.

 

John Collingwood is impressed and utilising the Parish explorer website.

 

Anna Lovell indicated that the Bus Users UK event, had been a success.

 

Mike Farmer asked that a village point system be adopted, as a metric to assess success levels.

 

Richard Freer had circulated a Local Plan document more comprehensive than previously.

 

To conclude;

 

Various members would prepare a combined interim Project Plan for discussion at the next Steering Group meeting on 24th February.

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 on the 17th February 2016, at Mountfield

 

21st January 2016 

Sustainable Transport Group

 

21st January 2016 at Mountfield

 

Attendees; Ian Harvey (Chair), Richard Freer, John Collingwood, Bob Driscoll, Anna Lovell, Rose Chaney,  Ignacio Gomez Aguilera.

 

In addition; Daryl Chambers, David Neylan and Catherine Searle

 

  1. Apologies; Erica Pretty and Mike Farmer

 

  1. Notes of Previous Meeting were agreed as correct.

 

  1. Update on Actions from Previous Meeting

 

Mike Farmer had contacted David Neylan and Ian Harvey had contacted the Bridport Borough Surveyor, Daryl Chambers.

 

  1. Issues/Agenda Items

 

- The proposed alternative to traffic lights at the Town Hall road junction, the confluence of East, West and South Streets was discussed. Daryl Chambers presented initially, and this was discussed by the attendees.

 

-At the previous meeting, a presentation was given on his findings on traffic volumes and the ramifications of the current, poor road infrastructure. (Lewis Gerolemou). Unfortunately time did not allow for this discussion.

 

 -Discussion ensued on the proposed Dorset CC consultation on the future of rural buses. (Bob Driscoll).


To conclude;

 

Bob Driscoll, Anna Lovell and John Collingwood to attend Bus User UK meeting, and report back accordingly.

 

It was suggested that Phyllida Culpin be invited to present on the associated document, Rural Access to Services; South Somerset Together 2013.

 

  1. Arrangements for Next Meeting;

 

At 18.00 h on the 3rd February 2016 at Mountfield

 

17th December 2015

Sustainable Transport meeting, 17th December 2015

 

Present: Ian Harvey (Chair, IH), Richard Freer (RF), John Collingwood (JC), Bob Driscoll (BD), Mike Farmer (MF) Erica Pretty (EP), Lewis Gerolemou (LG) and Ignacio Gómez Aguilera (IGA).

Apologies; Anna Lovell.

 

Members of the Bus Action Group and WATAG were all represented by the above attendees.

 

In addition Nigel Ewens (NE;Jurassic Coast Railways) and Charles Gardner (CG;Matrix Partnership) were in attendance.

 

Meeting began at 19.00

 

1)Presentation by NE/CG

 

NE began his presentation with a proposal to reinstate the rail system to link Bridport to the mainline at Maiden Newton.

He felt that the current population of 24,000 (the NP area plus Burton Bradstock and Netherbury) was significantly high, to justify and market lead such a project. It would be involve operating a year–round service, not just a seasonal one, serving in the main, local tourists.

 

The meeting were shown several maps indicating the route starting at Maiden Newton to encompass the villages of Toller Porcorum, Powerstock, Loders and Bridport, terminating at West Bay.

 

This would be a link of approximately fourteen miles in length, and would be a heavy duty, narrow guage (2ft 6inches) single track, with various dual-tracked passing places.

 

Essentially, it would be a re-vamping of the original track route from Maiden Newton to the eastern the vicinity of the Town. However due to subsequent historical development(s) (Travis Perkins and the Co-op, etc ) at St. Andrews Road,  a proposed,  alternative route via Gore Cross, involving a 300 metre tunnel, or alternatively, a northerly route to circumvent the adjacent hill, then southwards via Pymore, through central Bridport, linking to the bus station. The route would pass Skilling to the east, cross the A35 via a new bridge near the Eype flyover, onto Broomhills (where workshops would be sited) and ultimately on to the existing station at West Bay.

 

The meeting were informed that a total cost of £50m would conclude this project. Steam engines (originally constructed in the UK), would be purchased from the Sri Lankan government at a cost of £7m (an individual £4-500 engine rebuild was expected). Other rolling stock would be of bespoke design, and constructed in the UK, perhaps even locally. Typically, a carriage would convey a maximum of 60 passengers, and a train would consist of up to eight carriages, at a maximum speed of 25mph. There is scope to convey 220,000 passengers per annum.

 

In addition, more modern rolling stock, similar to the Parry’s People Mover utilised in Stourbridge. The commercialisation of the Parry System is currently enjoying research and implementation funding from a Warwick University based, spin-off company.

 

This system would employ a 90volt (third rail) power source in places (hills), but in the main it would employ a kinetic flywheel energy storage system, which is activated during the braking process. Rather similar to that of the Kinetic Energy Recovery System, (KERS) charging a battery unit, as utilised in F1 racing cars.

 

Furthermore, a narrow gauge railway costs one seventh! of a standard gauge system as eg., less land is required, when built from scratch.

 

Because the existing standard gauge track-bed width will be underutilised with a narrow gauge system, there is scope to employ a parallel cycleway and utilise a hop-on, hop-off system (potential synergy with Sustrans system; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sustrans). A park-and-ride system, sited on the periphery of Bridport was also proposed.

 

Proposed timelines were........(initial work would start at West Bay, then north to Pymore)

 

Initial engineering; 3 years or less. Initial expenditure of £1.5m would suffice.

Bridport to Pymore link; 18 months

Whole system in operation; 5 years in total.

 

Comments from NP Transport Group

 

BD was keen to see this happen, especially comparing the alternative, the erratic bus service. He was aware of three previous, failed attempts to achieve the aim of this proposal. There had been evidence of some resistance from the local community.

 

IH expressed concern that contributions towards this project could be a significant drain on Section 106 funding. This would restrict expenditure in other (more important) areas.

 

JC commented that there had been objections to the development of the cycle path by some land owners, and permission had been refused.

 

NE indicated that his Corporate Body had more inherent clout (than Sustrans), as there was a possibility of compulsory purchase options as a last resort.

 

MF was concerned that the link, from Maiden Newton, traversing the north of Dorchester, was not geographically viable ?

 

BD Would an alternative link to Crewkerne be viable ? To be a viable alternative to the bus, were train speeds in excess of 25mph be achievable ?

 

IH supported the viability of a service, particularly that it would be a source of employment, enhance green criteria by reducing the carbon footprint, with reductions of vehicle numbers in the NP locale.

 

RF asked about the frequency of the train service as to be a viable competitor to the bus service.

NE replied that a more frequent timetable would be employed between West Bay and Pymore.

 

MF asked that a dedicated map be generated, highlighting preserved areas would be useful.

 

IH asked that a map of the proposed route be supplied such that the Land Use Working Group, could assess a potential clash of alternative housing sites, to that of the proposed rail route.

 

MF asked if NE/CG wanted their proposal put before the Steering Group, and/ or would they independently submit it ?

 

IH indicated that the Transport Group could support the rail proposal , but could not enforce its inclusion in the NP.

 

To conclude NE/CG asked that the NP preserve the proposed rail corridor as part of the yet to  be evolved NP.

 

General meeting

 

 

 

LG presented his findings on traffic volumes and ramifications of the current, poor road infrastructure.

Hallam had generated false claims he felt. The NPPF requirement of “safe and suitable access” had been flawed. In West Allington pavements are non-existent in places.

 

Further details of LG’s sentiments can be found in a separate document.

 

BD further to RF’s comments previously (30/11/2015), a 40mph speed limit is to be applied on the A35 west of Bridport, according to a communication from Highways England.

 

BD indicated he’d circulated a Local Transport Plan (LTP). He has prepared a synopsis, of this rather lengthy document (122 pages).

 

MF reported to the meeting that he had been in touch with Dave Neylan with whom he has worked in the past, on various schemes applicable to the centre of the Town to alleviate the continuing blight caused by the TownHall(TH) traffic lights. At the last meeting he suggested that the full pedestrianisation of South Street could be one way forward. Dave has promoted a scheme which has the same aim of improving the town centre and essentially improving the traffic flow by replacing the traffic lights with a mini roundabout. He has produced plans which show the feasibility and ease of introduction of such a scheme. There are two very effective mini roundabouts within a few hundred yards of the town hall which carry a very similar flow of traffic. Like the T H junction they are both T junctions and it is evident that they both work well, any traffic congestion being caused by the Council imposed traffic light controlled pedestrian crossing pinch point which exacerbates the congestion caused by the TH traffic lights.

 

MF also reported that he had been in touch with the Town Surveyor, Daryl Chambers, on his attempts to move towards an eventual pedestrianisation of the town centre. The Town Council are also interested and have commissioned a feasibility study from the County Council (which could be seen as an odd choice due to the County Council's known obsession with traffic lights and usually sorry results of it's expensive and incoherent 'improvements' such as roundabouts at West  Bay, pre Olympic roundabout removal in Weymouth and disastrous interventions in Bridport).

Perhaps a report from an independent body might make more sense?

 

Both Dave Neylan and Daryl Chambers are keen to briefly address the committee on these two proposals to radically change the town centre and deal, once and for all, with the curse of town centre traffic congestion. Please could we schedule these meetings ?

 

IH suggested a more robust agenda process be adopted, particularly when the Group are exposed to external presentations. NE/CG had been rather verbose, and repetitive.

 

JC had investigated/ used Dorset Explorer to map existing road systems.

 

IH suggested the use of Parish Explorer.

 

 

The meeting closed at 21.00

 

Date of next meeting TBA.

30th November 2015

(Inaugural) Sustainable Transport meeting, 30th November 2015

 

Present: Ian Harvey (Chair, IH), Richard Freer (RF), John Collingwood (JC), Bob Driscoll (BD), Anna Lovell (AL), Mike Farmer (MF) and Ignacio Gómez Aguilera (IGA)

Members of the Bus Action Group, WATAG, and BLAP were all represented by the above attendees.

Meeting began at 19.00

 

Principal topics for discussion:

 

What we can do/ can’t do ? (as per consultant, Jo Witherden’s suggested guidelines)

Ours is a problem area...large housing remit....impact of travel concepts.

Need whole (NP) area discussion, not just Vearse Farm proposal.

 

General comments

 

MF suggested that the removal of traffic lights and other street furniture, particularly in the vicinity of the Town Hall, would be more fitting. This could be particularly attractive to enhancement of our tourist trade, ease of tourists traversing the Town. The example of Poundbury, tangibly exemplifies this, he felt. The use of roundabouts as an alternative would be preferable. Reduce the extent of central parking, particularly in East Street. This has resulted in a rat-run through the Conegar area.

 

A Shared-Space concept ought to be applied to the Town routes, but this is not applicable to the associated villages. In theory it would be good to eventually move to a Shared-Space policy but this is probably too radical at the moment in time and in the current financial climate. What I (and others) would like to promote for the immediate future, certainly towards the beginning of the plan timescale, is the pedestrianisation of South Street. This would resolve the town centre traffic hiatus, and create a pleasant, pedestrian, traffic free zone. Although the pedestrianisation of Dorchester's South Street could be held up as an example, Bridport's South Street pedestrianisation, would be superior in all ways as it would be seen as an extension to Bucky Doo square with all the benefits such as outdoor eating, and a wider range of activities. This would promote a more relaxed and pleasant environment, less pollution, safer and more convenient pedestrian movement. Greater opportunities for businesses, the list goes on....

 

It would also help East and West Streets, as only two traffic lanes would be needed which would lower pollution, increase fuel economy, save time. Furthermore, it would make a more suitable setting for the Town Hall, increase safety and make more space available for street parking. Rat-runs would no longer be needed, because the traffic would flow and use town routes more economically,

 

Even with the three way junction we have at the moment, it is accepted by all locals that when the traffic lights are not functioning the traffic flows much more easily, having been permitted to use the available road space more efficiently, and without unnecessary traffic light interference.

 

BD indicated that since 1991 the increase in congestion in Bridport was apparent,

The effect of delayed bus services, particularly in summer, adds to airborne pollution, as does stationary traffic, typically on the A35. Perhaps development of rail travel is the answer?

 

Furthermore, in a sustainable mould, encouragement of walking and cycling as an alternative to cars is the way ahead.

Reference to John Parry, (designed Parry’s People Mover). A train / hybrid system, is currently in place in the West Midlands - Stourbridge.

http://www.parrypeoplemovers.com/

 

RF indicated regarding pedestrianisation, the significant issues with pavements that are illegal wrt the width. An associate, Lewis Gerolemou, has indicated the minimum specified width of 1.5metres is not adhered to in many sites, particularly in West Allington. Apparently, a 3 metre pavement width is required adjacent to bus stops.

 

IH pointed out that most areas of Symondsbury village and Bradpole had no foot paths. The Bradpole PC had suggested rejecting an application for 6 industrial units in the middle of the village on transport grounds, due to safety concerns. (The units were passed under permitted development ).

 

JC indicated he eventually succumbed (avoidance of ten years) to buying a car, after many years of cycling. There are issues with main bus routes (40, X51 and X53 in particular). The council have divested their responsibility on maintaining a good service, he felt.

 

IH suggested a round-robin bus service to the villages, as this would have the potential to maintain a (more) frequent service. Perhaps this could be community run ?

 

AL suggested confirmed time-slots as to ease availability to clients.

 

IGA had gleaned from Phyllida Culpin, info. on the benefits of community transport services demonstrated in South Somerset. He continued that individuals could have shares in such a scheme, along with councils and parishes. Careful assessment of key routes is paramount. The community bus could work by dial-a-call mix with regular demands (timetable) open to any citizen.

Mention of Holistic plan is being discussed by DCC and emphasis in community transport schemes, although it seems with the interest in reduction of money in transport.

From another side, commercial lines are fundamental.  The Bus Action Group has insisted that DCC, sign contracts on commercial routes, with operators.

 

BD felt that a timetable should still be employed as to enhance punctuality. A minimum obligation should be insisted upon.

A core of volunteer drivers and funding for vehicles should be explored.

Connections of buses serving villages should be encouraged, on the basis of a minimum of two journeys per hour.

 

AL asked on the availability of cycle route maps ? The meeting inferred that these are available from WDDC !?

 

JC commented that new cycle routes are in place and the section behind the Co-op is proving popular with cyclists, dog-walkers and pram-pushers.

 

BD inferred that some landowners were still refusing access to the old railway route to Maiden Newton (Sustrans' cycleway).

 

MF questioned traffic-counts, how reliable were the figures ? The justification (?) for the West Bay traffic-pinch still angers many residents.

 

AL felt that decisions were made on financial grounds, not based on pragmatism.

 

IH reminded the meeting that brain-storming approaches were required to achieve the finalisation of the groups report by mid February, 2016.

 

RF suggested we ought to compare what other NP’s had done regarding Transport and how they’ve achieved sustainability concepts.

 

Dave Neylan (dj1nn299@googlemail.com) was suggested as being a useful liason !

 

BD had experienced alternate-entry onto (smaller) roundabouts, and at cross-roads, employed in, typically the Channel Islands. This he claimed, was an efficient system.

 

IGA felt that pedestrianisation does enhance an improved approach to movement en masse.

 

RF asked if the western boundary of the NP area included the east-bound approach to Miles Cross.

He further commented that a friend who lived in that vicinity, has repeatedly tried to reduce the current speed limit of 50 mph to 40 mph. The meeting felt that a working group independent to that of the NP, had been continuously monitoring this issue.

 

IH commented that Dorset Explorer, is a useful mapping aid. AL was asked to investigate.

 

MF asked why there was not a direct access into Vearse farm from Miles Cross. RF commented that there would be....but only during the lifetime of construction and only to be used by commercial vehicles. IH there were financial constraints and it wasn’t our remit, as there is an A35 working group being re-erected with Sarah Williams and Oliver Letwin to discuss the the A35 traffic issues. IH has requested a member of the NP be involved in this process to feed the information into the NP.  Thus trying to avoid repeating this work. The only Highways England money to be spent locally, was the modifications on Raymond’s Hill. Although an entrance from the 'Miles Cross roundabout' would be very useful and would certainly help traffic flow in West Road, I feel that an access onto Broad Lane would be very useful and would allow access to the Crown roundabout, the town and schools, Morrisons and continuing west to the Eype Junction (which would have to have a 'slow down' lane and 'no right turn' to make this notorious junction safe) This addition to the access to Vearse Farm would take the pressure off  West Road and help traffic flow through the town. It would also help to integrate Vearse Farm, and give more convenient access to West Bay.

The Connect organisation were funded based on the number of cars in transit, so they would be reluctant to inhibit traffic flow !

 

RF felt that the Group should be aware of both Highways England and the Dorset County Highway Authorities comments regarding the current objections to the Hallam Land Group’s planning application, at Vearse Farm. He felt we should monitor developments on the outcome of this planning issue. MF was aware of the two road entry/ exit issue onto West Road, West Allington.

 

IH confirm that English Nature, had successfully objected to the access to the southern boundary onto Broad Lane.

The meeting unanimously, agreed that a roundabout was required at Miles Cross.

 

BD reiterated that we need to establish what we can and can’t do as part of our remit. In particular, the researching of community transport hubs.

 

IH suggested that we contact Nigel Ewens, director of Jurassic Coast Railways to present to the group, on his aim reconnect Bridport to the rail system.

 

RF was concerned that the ramification of this is to increase the house prices of the skewed, unrealistic pricing of the area housing even more. Would this be a seasonal service for tourists, or an all-year-round commercial venture ? RF also had experience of Mr. Ewens previous projects in North Wales, which involved rather expensive fare costings. BD pointed out that Axminster and Crewkerne had mainline links and their properties are a lot cheaper than ours.

 

Actions

IH to contact Nigel Ewens

RF to familiarise/ summarise the Vearse Farm planning objections wrt road access.

AL Dorset Explorer, is a useful mapping aid. Investigate the continuum of the Riverside Walk option. Potential for grant monies from the AONB/ CPRE perhaps ?

IGA to investigate bus links.

BD to scrutinise LTP3, the Local Transport Plan.

MF to further explore the shared area scheme.

JC to investigate Pedestrian/ cycle routes via Dorset Explorer.

 

Meeting closed at 20.35

 

Next meeting at 19.00, 17th December at Mountfield.

Address:

c/o Bridport Town Council

Mountfield

Rax Lane

Bridport

DT6 3JP

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